Angolan academic and activist with studies in development and international aid/cooperation. He is, above all, an Africanist and speaks out from this perspective. Founder of the Angola Social Observatory, former director of ADRA, one of the largest social organizations in his country. He is as sharp as he is irreverent, with in-depth knowledge of the role that NGOs should play.
I believe that the international development community has to make three vital leaps forward:
1- First, it must be democratized, a fundamental democratization that implies seeing local partners as true partners and not as mere recipients of funds and support received from the North without the possibility of influencing the agendas of the international development community.
2– The international development community must adopt a development logic that goes beyond the paternalistic and imperialistic logic with which the West has always treated the peoples of the South.
3- The international development community must reconcile itself with its past legacy, which masqueraded as international aid ; many African peoples have seen the emergence of ill-prepared individuals, shameful agendas, projects that in the end have served the interests of those who came to help rather than those needing help.
All this has profoundly marked the way in which many of us look at the mechanisms of international aid, and we can only change our approach to this sad episode through declarations of intent; we must recognize our mistakes and be willing to act differently.
As to how it can meet this challenge, I feel that the international development community must reinvent itself, and this means critically asking ourselves: Why is the other world we all dreamed of still so far removed from the world we have achieved?